Dunloggin Middle students earn pep rally for fundraising

Education Notebook

December 02, 2007|By John-John Williams IV

More than 500 Dunloggin Middle School students attended a surprise pep rally in their honor Friday that recognized them for raising $12,676 for charity during November.

The money was given to Harvest for the Hungry, a Maryland-based initiative that helps local food banks, during the pep rally, which featured a performance by the Centennial High School cheerleaders.

A representative from County Executive Ken Ulman's office declared Friday Dunloggin Dragons Dollar Day.

"They really, really enjoyed it," said Heather Yeo, an alternative education teacher who also serves as the school's Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) coach. "They got the point that we were very proud of them. ... We're so impressed with the outcome of the situation."

PBIS is a national initiative that encourages adults to give students positive feedback; some schools offer prizes and other incentives to reward good behavior.

Dunloggin staff members were surprised by the students' generosity.

"We initially didn't think the students were going to do this," Yeo said.

In their first week of fundraising, Dunloggin students brought in more than $1,000. The school's PTA donated $1,000 to recognize the students' efforts.

"It wasn't that much time," Yeo said of the monthlong effort. "But we sure did get a lot out of it."

Helping others

When students in Ilchester Elementary School's "Think Tank" classes learned about children in need of supplies in New Mexico, they sprang into action.

They have gathered more than 900 items of school supplies in time for the holiday season.

About 300 students living in the Cochiti Pueblo will be helped by the Ilchester donations, said Marlene Iris, the school's gifted and talented resource teacher, who has named her two classes Think Tanks.

"We are looking for problems that we can solve," said Iris. "The world has lots of problems, [and] a class of 24 can make a difference."

Beginning in October, Iris' students advertised their fundraising efforts during morning announcements, through Ilchester's biweekly newsletter and by eSchoolnewsletter.

One student donated an array of his favorite school supplies.

"When [students] bought something for themselves, they bought something for the Cochiti children as well," Iris said.

The students obtained a discount on the cost of shipping the supplies from the owner of Parcel Plus in Dorsey's Search.

Iris wants to send out the supplies the week of Dec. 10.

"We want to make sure they get it in a timely way," Iris said. "If they get it around the holidays, that would be good for them."

Silver Medal schools

River Hill and Centennial high schools have been named Silver Medal Schools, said U.S. News & World Report.

Schools were evaluated on their students' ability to "exceed statistical expectations" on tests, given their level of student poverty, their test scores for disadvantaged student groups, and students' participation in, and performance on, Advanced Placement exams.

Check out The Sun's education blog InsideEd, http:--weblogs. baltimoresun.com/news/education/blog/, tomorrow for the controversy surrounding these rankings.

Civility tree

It's Civilitree time at Bollman Bridge Elementary School. No, that's not a typo; it's the latest initiative that coincides with the county's Choose Civility campaign and the school system's civility policy.

County Executive Ken Ulman is expected to come to the school Thursday for the dedication of the Civilitree in the main hallway of the school.

The tree has been designed by two Bollman Bridge teachers: Barbara Kronberger and Emily Johnson. Staff members will honor students by hanging on the tree a heart-shaped leaf for kindness, or a hand-shaped leaf for helpfulness. A description of the student's actions will be written on one side, and the student will decorate the other side.

"We hope this tree will be a concrete reminder to our young students to be the careful citizens we want them to be," said Bonnie Bricker, a teacher in the Bollman Bridge Regional Early Childhood Center.

In addition to the county and school system initiatives, the tree aligns with the school's emphasis on the "3 Bees": be respectful, be responsible and be safe, said Bricker.

"We hope that this tree, along with our continual coaching, helps all of our students to enjoy their school time together, respecting the differences and humanity within each of us," Bricker said.


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